Ben Ainslie returned to the wheel of the Great Britain SailGP F50 ahead of the ROCKWOOL Denmark Sail Grand Prix in Aarhus – 20 and 21 August.
And they wasted no time in putting down a marker as he and the British crew broke the SailGP F50 speed record with a top speed of 98.3 km/h (61.1mph/53.1 knots) in strong breeze on the Aarhus waters.
It was an eventful return to action for Ainslie, who had missed the previous two SailGP events to welcome the arrival of his baby son Fox.
After winning the opening event of the season in Bermuda, Ainslie has returned to the Great Britain SailGP Team with the team in a strong position, second on the overall Championship leaderboard level on points with the leaders – Tom Slingsby’s Australia SailGP Team.
Ainslie said: “Now, coming into Aarhus we’ve got to regroup quickly. It was a full-on day out there today, a real team effort to keep the boat on its feet and we hit our fastest speed yet which is always good fun.”
“One of those days where you’re glad you can get the boat back to the dock in reasonable shape!”
“We’ve got three key events pretty much back-to-back coming in Aarhus, Saint-Tropez and Cadiz (Andalusia) so it will be very important to get going quickly, get some solid finishes and try to keep ourselves at the top-end of the League.”
The ROCKWOOL Denmark Sail Grand Prix is live on Sky Sports from 2pm BST on Friday 20 August and from 12pm BST on Saturday 21 August 21, and is also free to view on SailGP’s YouTube channel.